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Security Council passes Swiss-backed Syrian aid extension

The UN Security Council has voted through an extension to cross-border humanitarian aid in Syria, a mandate that was backed by Switzerland.

Protecting civilian populations in conflict zones is one of Switzerland’s priorities as it embarks on an historic first seat on the Security Council this year.

Switzerland introduced the resolution as co-penholder of the Syrian humanitarian file with Brazil.

The motion to extend humanitarian aid until July 10 was passed unanimously by Security Council members on Monday.

The decision allows UN agencies to provide humanitarian aid to some four million people in north-western Syria.

“The cross-border humanitarian aid encompasses food, assistance regarding emergency shelters, education, the protection of the civilian population, and health, as well as equipment required to provide water and sanitation,” the Swiss government stated.

The humanitarian mission to Syria has been a touchy subject in the Security Council with some members only agreeing to it on a rolling six-month basis.

Switzerland has been providing humanitarian aid to affected communities in Syria and its neighbouring countries since 2011.

This includes emergency aid, enabling access to vital services, assisting in the protection of civilians and their livelihoods and promoting compliance with international humanitarian law and human rights.

Source: Swiss Info